Today I had the pleasure of whacking the white spheroid around the Pechanga Golf Course here at the Pechanga Resort/Casino in Temecula, CA.
Above you can see my shot on the scenic par-3 17th hole. I hit a 9-iron past the flag left and it came back down the hill, nearly dropping for an ace. That was one of the highlight shots of today’s round.
Pechanga Par-3 15th
Now that I’ve made my way around the course for the first time I’m looking forward to taking another shot, or journey at Pechanga, tomorrow. I’ll know better where to hit shots, and not where to hit them. That doesn’t mean I can control where they go, however.
I’m not sure what’s more fun, setting up my golf club glam shot photo shoots, or testing great golf clubs. Today we are getting a first look at the new Bridgestone Golf J15 Driving Forged Irons, or J15DF.
Bridgestone Golf J15DF Irons – click to see more
I will start testing these irons soon, and post a review when I’ve got enough rounds with them to give a proper evaluation. Translation: I’m not going to hit three 7-irons on the driving range and rave about how great they are…
Bridgestone Golf J15DF Irons
I’ve had a poll up and running for quite some time on the front page here which asked the question “What is the best airline for golf travel?” I’ve finally decided to end that poll and post the astounding results, which I completely agree with. Here they are below.
- US Airways (4%)
- United Airlines (5%)
- Southwest Airlines (60%)
- Jetblue Airlines (10%)
- Delta Airlines (8%)
- Continental Airlines (1%)
- British Airways (3%)
- American Airlines (10%)
Southwest Airlines resoundingly won with 60% of the voters picking them. The closest competitor was Jetblue airlines at only 10%.
I agree with this vote based on the two following primary reasons:
- Cost: Southwest is very competitive price-wise. Golf is expensive and we can travel more if the airfare is more affordable.
- Free baggage: To bring my golf clubs on Delta or another airline that charges for bags can run an extra $50-$150!!! That’s highway (airway) robbery.
Who is the WORST airline for golf travel? The previous HOG poll’s results can be found by clicking the link in the previous sentence.
My golf game has suffered this year. That’s what having a 2-year-old son, a lovely bride, several jobs, a new hobby (hopefully business) passion, and about 20 websites will do. For many years I’ve managed to be able to squeeze in four rounds of golf per week during golf season here in northern Utah. This is about half the year. At four rounds per week I can get enough reps (me and Tiger) in to get my handicap to around the one range.
Lately though, I’ve been at one nine hole round and one 18 hole round per week. Yes, cry me a river. First world problems. No need to comment.
With that little play or practice I can’t expect to play at the highest level. Today I played 18 holes and tried to keep that in mind, not getting too mad if I didn’t hit as many solid shots as normal or score as well as I want to. I shot five over with six bogeys and one birdie. My short game, especially with so little practice, is a sieve of leaked strokes. I think that’s pretty average and what I can expect from my ability level with not many reps.
This brings up a point I’ve talked about previously, which is whether I can find enjoyment in the game if I’m not able to play at the level I want to. Golf takes a lot of time, money, practice, resources… Knowing these things, and knowing I likely will not improve makes me ponder if it is worth continuing. Today I enjoyed playing with a couple of long time pals, and was into that more than counting strokes.
Strangely, I’m looking forward to winter here. That’s a first. Never happened before. I plan to use the time off from golf to really evaluate what I get from the game, what I want from it, and what it keeps me from doing or achieving. Come spring perhaps I will have reached some conclusions and have a sense of direction, and better place golf (or not) in my life.
I may not have typed all this drivel if I would have just made a couple more birdies today…
Sadly, an Arthur Hills “links” style course here in Salt Lake looks to be closing at the end of this season. I could go into the politics of why this is happening, and talk about mismanagement and all that, but I’ll just say that we have a lot of new bike trails in town now.
View of Salt Lake City from Wingpointe’s 4th tee – click to see more
I played Wingpointe a few days ago and the greens were as good as ever. Unfortunately the fairways are not that great and the only good lie a player is guaranteed is on the tee. But that’s the nature of the beast when you are on soil full of salt from the Great Salt Lake.
Wingpointe Golf Course
That round a few days ago might be my last there. As much as I love the design and the greens, the whole experience is tainted by the poor fairways.
I have many great memories at Wingpointe, like the time I shot 31-41 for a very irritating 72. Won a tournament there too a couple of years ago.
Sad to see this course closing. It won’t be the last golf course closure here in Salt Lake I’m afraid.